Moon Embracing the Sun

Scarlet-moon embracing the sun


Ari, a shaman of the Royal Star Mansion (Royal Astrology House), is awakened one night by a psychic impression of imminent danger to one of the king’s sons, who is considered a potential rival for the throne. When she investigates, she witnesses his murder and is discovered by the perpetrators who gave chase. She manages to escape but is greatly injured in the process. The next day, after she receives help from the pregnant wife of the palace’s Chief Scholar, Ari has a vision about the fate of the unborn child. In gratitude for the aid she received, Ari promises to watch over the child, even in death.

Later that day, Ari is arrested, tortured, and thrown in jail. Her friend and fellow shaman, Jang Nok-yeong, visits her in secret. Ari tells Nok-yeong that she has foreseen the birth of a young woman who has a “noble fate” and who is connected to the royal house. Knowing that her death is near, Ari begs Nok-yeong to watch over this child in her stead. Nok-yeong makes a promise without even knowing who or where the child is. The next day, Ari is declared guilty of treason and tortured, refusing to lie about the murder, and is executed while receiving visions of the future once more.

Several years pass and the aristocratic but modest and loving Heo family now includes two children: seventeen-year-old son Yeom and thirteen-year-old daughter, Yeon-woo (which means “misty rain”). Even at such a young age, Yeon-woo already exhibits wisdom beyond her years. One day, Yeon-woo accompanies her mother to the royal palace to attend Yeom’s¬†civil service examination¬†congratulatory ceremony. Yeon-woo wanders away from the ceremony after being distracted by a butterfly and has a chance encounter with Crown Prince Lee Hwon. Although there was brief misunderstanding about each other’s identities, as a result of their chance encounter, Lee Hwon and Yeon-woo fall in love.

Meanwhile, Yeom’s outstanding scholarship caused him to be immediately engaged as a tutor for the Crown Prince. Yeon-woo, on the other hand, is chosen to be a companion for the prepubescent Princess Min-hwa along with Bo-kyung, the ambitious and deceitful daughter of the palace’s Prime Minister and maternal blood relative to the Queen Dowager. Jang Nok-yeong, now the Head Shaman, realizes that Yeon-woo is the child whom Ari begged her to protect years ago.

Min-hwa, the younger sister of Crown Prince Lee Hwon, is a young girl who cries, whines, and screams when she does not get her way. Upon seeing her brother’s handsome “Teacher Heo”, Min-hwa becomes obsessed with him. When she discovers that Yeon-woo is Teacher Heo’s sister, she expresses her preference for Yeon-woo’s company. Bo-kyung, who is all but ignored by the princess, feels slighted by the princess’ favoritism. Min-hwa soon asks her father to allow her to marry Yeom. The king refuses, for reasons that are rooted in tradition, political strategy, and socio-cultural correctness. He explains to Min-hwa that the husband of a princess (Prince Consort) is not allowed to be involved in political matters and cannot have any governmental position. He adds that Yeom is an intelligent and morally upright person and that marrying the princess would ruin his political aspirations.